X

Cookies on SurvivingInfidelity.com®

SurvivingInfidelity.com® uses cookies to enhance your visit to our website. This is a requirement for participants to login, post and use other features. Visitors may opt out, but the website will be less functional for you.

more information about cookies...

Return to Forum List

Return to Wayward Side

SurvivingInfidelity.com® > Wayward Side

You are not logged in. Login here or register.

Something I have struggled with since before D-Day

Pages: 1 · 2

MrCleanSlate posted 11/18/2019 16:13 PM

Just over 4 years now since D-Day, but in truth I ended the A a few weeks before my AP decided to go nuclear on my BW. My AP had a hard time coming to grips with the fact I ended it, lied to her all along, etc.

Anyhow, I reconciled with my wife and learnt an awful lot about myself, and my BW, in the process.

So, here are the things I have struggled with:-During the A I actually did enjoy the attention and the sex that was being offered. Oh, I knew it was wrong, but I really went all in for the ego stroking. -My AP was definitely a step down from my wife. To be honest she was a wreck of a person. But she was really good at trying to snare me and keep me and she worked me better than anyone could have expected-She was worse than me at giving up her morals. I get that now. She had a kid too. Her plan was to snag me away from my family. I didn't see that a the time. My BW made me understand that later by showing me what my AP messaged her with. -I really didn't care about my AP. I said all the usual wayward lies about soulmate, love, etc. That was all to keep feeding my ego.-I still to this day have a hard time accepting that I used my BW and AP the way I did. I mean I fucked with a bunch of peoples lives.

I'm not looking for sympathy or justification.

Even though I ended the affair before D-Day, I still to this day have some feelings for my AP. Almost like I feel I need to tell her that I used her. Am I the only one?

Buzzy posted 11/18/2019 16:33 PM

If it's in the past then leave it there. As for enjoying the sex well people enjoy sex and exploring it with a new person is great except that is when you are in a relationship. Many of us have made bad choices but you will gain nothing by beating yourself up other it.

Buck posted 11/18/2019 16:34 PM

I really didn't care about my AP. I said all the usual wayward lies about soulmate, love, etc. That was all to keep feeding my ego.


Even though I ended the affair before D-Day, I still to this day have some feelings for my AP. Almost like I feel I need to tell her that I used her.

WTF dude. Iím new to SI and this shocks me. What feelings could you possibly have for your AP after 4yrs NC - especially given the fact she outed youíre dirty laundry to your wife after you CHOSE to end it? She went nuclear with your BW to make damn sure you would get your fair share of consequences, and you have feelings for her?

Please elaborate on these ďfeelingsĒ. Iím hoping Iíve misinterpreted your post.

MrCleanSlate posted 11/18/2019 16:45 PM

Buzzy- you actually got me onto thinking about a lot of this. It was the way we use others for our own ends. Enjoying the moment, etc.

Buck - In a really demented way, my affair seeing the light of day actually helped save my marriage. Now as for feelings for my AP, well, I guess it is more of the wanting to apologize variety, than the I miss fucking you variety. I actually feel bad now because i so used her.

Yes, she blew things up real good, but she lost all effect because I was ready to admit to all to my BW anyway (truth be told, I was on the fence about saying anything to my BW, too much of a chicken to do that until it was thrown in my face).

BraveSirRobin posted 11/18/2019 17:01 PM

No, you're not, but you gotta let it go. You can't make it up to the AP and shouldn't try. There was no way to handle it that wasn't going to hurt someone, and better her by far than your innocent BW.

If you had been more concerned with AP's feelings post-DDay, you would just have further traumatized everyone involved. I know because that's what I did, for eight torturous months of insisting OM and I could be "just friends." The AP would absolutely have tried to use your guilt as leverage to get you back. She would have believed that as long as the door wasn't nailed shut, there was some part of you that wanted her to wedge it back open. Your BW would have been scared and furious if you expressed concern how this toxic intruder felt. This is one case where having your head up your ass ironically helped you, because your desires and the needs of your marriage were aligned.

And now, four years later, you still can't fix it. She's either moved on, in which case you would just be stirring the pot of her recovery, or she is still bitter and pining, and an "I'm sorry" will not solve anything. Part of your penance is knowing that the person whose ego kibbles you craved will forever think you're a worthless POS. That's okay. She tried to steal a married man, so whatever you told her, she bears some responsibility for her own disillusionment.

I say this with compassion and not rancor. In her eyes, you'll always be the asshole you've worked so hard to leave behind. And if she ever did any work to improve herself and her brokenness, you'll never know that either. You just have to make peace with that.

MrCleanSlate posted 11/18/2019 17:21 PM

BSR,

Thank you.

This is one of those discussions I just couldn't have with my wife.

It really has been chewing me up for the last 6 months or so. Part of the reason I came on here to be honest. I felt bad about how I treated my AP. The other reason was my wife showing some heightened 'I don't trust you' behaviour the last few months. Maybe it is all related to the recent 4 year anniversary of D-day.

I really was starting to get this feeling that I need to apologize to my AP, but you actually pointed out that it is something I just need to live with. No contact prevails.

Still....guilt rears its ugly head.

Lucky77 posted 11/18/2019 18:43 PM

Hi MCS

Iím right there with you brother

Iím two years out and think about AP daily. Mine was a downgrade too but I lapped you the attention.

ff4152 posted 11/18/2019 19:15 PM

MrCleanSlate

Just something to ponder. Perhaps you used your AP. Maybe you told her things she wanted to hear so she would give you better head and tell you what a great guy you are.

TBH, tough shit on her.

Why do I say that? The simple fact she knew you were married. IMO, that negates any consideration or sympathy she may have gotten.

Iím a little over 3 years out and I feel nothing for my AP. Oh I suppose a little pity sneaks in every now and then because she is probably still just as broken as she ever was. Sure I enjoyed the sexual aspect from a physical sense. But Iíll tell you what, I would rather get a hug from my wife than a world class blowjob from my AP any day of the week. What I have with my wife is real; what I thought I had with my AP was just an illusion.

MrCleanSlate posted 11/19/2019 09:37 AM

ff,

TBH, tough shit on her.
My wife would probably say the same thing. LOL.

I definitely agree that whatever I had with AP was an illusion and a lie. Putting the perspective back into place a bit.....Thanks.

DaddyDom posted 11/20/2019 00:38 AM

To be honest, this is a problem, in my opinion.

I applaud you for opening up enough to see your part in things, and your AP's reality as well. That being said, however, if you are still worried about apologizing to your AP, then to me, that sounds as if you are still dealing with some boundary issues. It also tells me that you are still more worried about what your AP or other people think of you, rather than knowing who you are and loving and respecting the person you are.

There are people in your life that deserve and require your remorse for your actions. Your AP is not on that list of people. Your spouse, kids, family, co-workers, community, friends, whoever you lied to or put yourself ahead of in order to have an affair. Go feel badly about how you treated them. They didn't deserve it. Your AP was compliant and even instrumental in your affair. No need to waste one moment of energy there. You feel badly for using her? That's good. Just let that be a motivator to never do so again. Never contact her again, period, end of story, no excuses.

So here is a question for you. How do you think your wife would feel about your feelings of remorse in regard to the way you treated your AP? Do you think it would make her feel loved by you, or that you still place the AP before her?

Why does this matter to you? Sure, as WS's we have regrets by the bucket load, but still, a healthy person learns to love and respect themselves even though they have made bad choices and decisions in life. To be honest, if more people loved themselves, there would be a helluva lot less affairs in the world. So... why does it matter? How do you feel about yourself, and how would talking to the AP possibly make you feel any better about yourself? How would damaging your wife, even more, make you feel about yourself?

Brother, if I ever talked to my AP again, I would consider myself a complete loser. I would barf. And my wife wouldn't have to divorce me because I'd throw myself in front of a bus instead. Seriously, I never want to be that guy again, and the thought of it alone sends me running in the other direction.

Not sure if you are in IC but this is something I would bring up with them so that you can explore these feelings and work on them.

hikingout posted 11/20/2019 06:43 AM

I was your AP. Not literally of course. But the female counterpart who heard all the lies and gobbled them up. I didnít do the nuclear thing or any of that mess.

What you are missing is that I lied and used my AP too for those same highs and good feelings. And so did your AP. I think you still have some notions to debunk to get to the other side of this. You feel you owe her an apology because you feel at some level that she feels disappointed that it didnít work out. That somehow some where she still pines or thinks about you. That it was real to her.

Those are all thoughts you are still using to get your ego stroked. They are mythology. You toying with apologizing to her is toying with the idea you would like to confirm she does still feel this way even though you donít.

The AP in my situation told me all kinds of shit, the I love youís, all the stuff that allowed him to get me to reflect back what he was putting out. But I was doing the same. I didnít really know it at the time but everything he was doing I was doing for the same reasons. I never loved him, sure I had the high feelings but I really didnít have true concern over him. I didnít care that I was wrecking his family, or his life. An affair is an island of make believe and both people have to play at that.You never got to see she may have realized those same things for herself. That she may or may not have worked out that a big part of her being attracted to you was your unavailability, the game she was playing to compete with your wife to prove to herself she was better:

You got to walk away at a time when she was still mad for you and you took that feeling and put it under lock and key because you wanted to keep the thing you got at space camp. Your little souvenir. I imagine the AP in my situation did something similar, at least for some period of time. But me and your AP? We got a different gift - it was made much more obvious how little we meant. It allowed us to move on without storing that as an illusion. She likely is somewhere else on her life now, far removed from you and any pain regarding you. I would recommend you drop the fantasy of anything different. You feel a power over her that you would release with a sorry? Itís her responsibility to relinquish her own power.

I am with daddy dom, think about your boundaries. And think about the idea you still get something out of thinking you were more important to her than she was to you.

[This message edited by hikingout at 6:45 AM, November 20th (Wednesday)]

cptprkchp posted 11/20/2019 07:29 AM

OMG, HO - You really hit the nail on the head.

MCS - You might do well to read what HikingOut wrote then read it again. Then print it out. Then keep reading it. Everyone here has given you amazing advice so please listen.

The bottom line is that you need to work your shit out - stay NC - also, your BS isn't stupid. Chances are, she knows most of what you are feeling. While I'm sure she doesn't give a shit about XAP - she might like to know that you feel shitty about your horrible behavior. It doesn't even have to be about XAP in particular - just that you are mortified at yourself that you could treat other people that horribly. I actually struggle with that - not about XAP but that I acted like such a narcissistic piece of shit. I keep it green so it never happens again!

Best of luck to you!

hikingout posted 11/20/2019 09:02 AM

I have thought a lot about your post, MCS. I hope you understand while it might have sounded like I was being hard on you, I think you were brave to talk about your thinking. I think now that you have brought it to light it might help you dissipate some of it.

I hate to admit it but I think it triggered me a bit as well. To see something I don't think I saw before. I walked away with no illusion over what I meant to the AP. In fact, a lot of his parting words were really designed for me to not cause him further trouble. I knew a lot about his past affair history, I had access also to damage his career (if I was crazy enough to take a hit to mine as well). He was "buttoning me up" so I didn't go nuclear. But, really that showed to me his level of manipulation, and really it was truly unneeded. I was messy with the affair, but I wasn't bunny boiler crazy. I also felt a tremendous amount of guilt towards his wife once I realized she knew. Where was that when I was sleeping with her husband? Nowhere to be found.

But, that in itself bothered me for a long time. It bothered me that he was the one to end it and walk away. I felt helpless and powerless at the time. The mindfuck that is a limerant affair is that is what the affair is about. Wanting reciprocation, even if you yourself are not offering it fully. It's a game to be won, and a lot of adrenaline and highs. It's really not about the people.

Anyway, that was a revisit of an area I haven't thought about in a very long time.

Here were a few other thoughts you shared, that I think would benefit you to reframe:

-My AP was definitely a step down from my wife. To be honest she was a wreck of a person. But she was really good at trying to snare me and keep me and she worked me better than anyone could have expected

You are saying she worked you better --- that takes out your ownership of it. What does that mean? At the time you were falling for it? At the time, I am assuming you believed your words and feelings at least to a certain extent? It also indicates you know you were being manipulated. If you know that, why would you need to apologize to her? Or is it really an apology that you are looking to give? Is it you feel like there would be some vindication for you to be able to say "I used you". Some salve it would give you?

-She was worse than me at giving up her morals. I get that now. She had a kid too. Her plan was to snag me away from my family. I didn't see that a the time.

Is that really true? How can you define worse in giving up her morals? Was she married? Are you minimizing or comparing realistically? I find this to be just as concerning of a thought, so I think you should unwind that a little bit more.

[This message edited by hikingout at 10:12 AM, November 20th (Wednesday)]

BraveSirRobin posted 11/20/2019 10:51 AM

Those are all thoughts you are still using to get your ego stroked. They are mythology. You toying with apologizing to her is toying with the idea you would like to confirm she does still feel this way even though you donít.
You got to walk away at a time when she was still mad for you and you took that feeling and put it under lock and key because you wanted to keep the thing you got at space camp. Your little souvenir.
Another vote here for "nail on the head." I was mentally composing a post to this effect, and hikingout beat me to it.

I did this exact routine at stressful periods of my post-A life. I wasn't worrying about the OM, although I did my very best to convince myself that I was. I was trying to recapture that feeling of someone being desperate for me, offering me anything I wanted because I was just that amazing. That's a pretty cheap, broken thing to want when you have a healthy relationship in the present, but because I hadn't done any digging to understand my whys, I didn't see how I was emotionally self-medicating.

When I reread your post and noticed that you said your BW is going through a rough period with renewed distrust, I suspected that you were mentally going back to that old touchstone of feeling irreplaceable. Intellectually, you probably know/fear that your AP has moved on with her life. My AP certainly has, and he would probably be a combination of appalled and amused to know how much space he occupied in my head for so long. And I would be crushingly embarrassed That's the final irony, really. You didn't care about her, and you end up the one who can't let go.

hikingout posted 11/20/2019 10:55 AM

I was trying to recapture that feeling of someone being desperate for me, offering me anything I wanted because I was just that amazing.

SAME.

When I reread your post and noticed that you said your BW is going through a rough period with renewed distrust, I suspected that you were mentally going back to that old touchstone of feeling irreplaceable.

Oh I didn't pick up on that, but makes complete sense. The new period of distrust is likely triggering some of your old feelings of not feeling good enough. So, you go back to that area of your life when someone seemingly worshipped you. It makes sense with what I know about things I have had to work through. Thought examination and analyzing is super hard to do on your own, again this illumination of it is a really good way to dissipate it.

MrCleanSlate posted 11/20/2019 15:13 PM

All,

I've read and re-read your responses.

hikingout and BSR....Thanks! And Daddydom you really knocked some sense into me as well. (HO - btw the "I was your AP..." freaked me out for a second...Changed my shorts and all is good now. LOL)It really did bother me this creeping feeling of guilt. I've an IC early December and plan on dealing with this topic. the anniversary of D-Day, my wife getting her antennas up.

So to hikingout:

Is that really true? How can you define worse in giving up her morals? Was she married? Are you minimizing or comparing realistically? I find this to be just as concerning of a thought, so I think you should unwind that a little bit more.

She initially told me she was married, but a few weeks into the A she kicked her H out for having and affair. After D-Day she revealed to my BW that her M was over before my A started. Who knows what is real, Imagine cheaters lie.

You are saying she worked you better --- that takes out your ownership of it. What does that mean? At the time you were falling for it? At the time, I am assuming you believed your words and feelings at least to a certain extent? It also indicates you know you were being manipulated. If you know that, why would you need to apologize to her? Or is it really an apology that you are looking to give? Is it you feel like there would be some vindication for you to be able to say "I used you". Some salve it would give you?

Oh I'm not taking out the ownership. The fact is that I was in a really fucked up state of mind and instead of dealing with issues I decided to have an affair. What my AP did well though was to take advantage of my weakness and use that to work me over. And yes I was more than willing to play along to get my ego stroked. And yes I think some of the I USED YOU regret is there, regardless of what she did or how she used me.

MrCleanSlate posted 11/20/2019 15:37 PM

She would send her kid to spend a night with her previous divorced husband (H1, not H2 that apparently cheated on her) so could come over. H1 was apparently an alcoholic and not to be trusted. Supposedly the kid would sleep on the floor. Did I care. Nope. I mean seriously...then when she asked for help with mortgage..yeah I was not down for that. But she doubled down and offered anal a few days later. I was too stupid to connect the dots. (and anal was not that high on my list).

Was any of it real? The most fucked up thing is that her job was in the public sector where you expect some morals....

So I do have some guilt because it was all messed up.

I would have run from someone like her. I didn't though. I used her big time. I think that is my real guilt.

hikingout posted 11/20/2019 15:42 PM

Okay, I can see what you are saying there.

But, it sounds like to me that you were a rebound for her. People who cheat have their own reasons of desperation, but I can't see how one is less committed to their morals than the other at least in what you are saying. She was in the process of losing her husband for an unknown reason, she was looking for another husband basically. I get that's an evil thing to do to your wife, and that wasn't reciprocated as you may or may not have been still poaching his wife. But, I think that you feeling that you had any high horse to ride in comparison to her is a false thing as well.

The AP in my situation, he was a serial cheater. I still do not feel that in comparison I was morally any better than he was. He had more experience at it, probably had some predatory things he had down pat that I allowed myself to fall for. But, I still see us as equals in that way. That being said, he didn't reach out to my husband and say a bunch of bull shit to him. Depending on what that shit was, I could see saying he was lower than me in some sort of anger. But, I don't think he was morally lower than me. But I don't think he was a good person at all.

I think you have some definitely tangled up thoughts when it comes to the AP, but I realize that has nothing to do with having romantic feelings for her or wanting to be with her, or even missing her. Affairs are complicated things to evolve from. I don't feel any guilt when it comes to the AP in my situation. He made his decisions. I feel guilt towards his wife. I feel like anyone who has an affair is going to be burned, it's not my responsibility any repercussions he faced due to decisions he made. He was not an innocent party by any means. The only innocents were my husband and his wife.

[This message edited by hikingout at 3:59 PM, November 20th (Wednesday)]

MrCleanSlate posted 11/20/2019 16:07 PM

hikingout,

You know one thing that struck me years after the A was that my AP had likely done this before. I was not a player at all. She told me to ditch my wedding ring, coached me on what do say, basically gave me the cheating handbook. And my BW would have sniffed this out had she not been so absorbed in her own depression and grief (loss of her father).

Another thing that came up during MC in D-Day+2yrs was that my BW had an EA about two years before my affair. Yeah. I came to that during a session and brought up that she was texting with a junior partner at work and I saw her smile. She said he was always trying to get her to go for a coffee. Years later at MC she admitted that she was flattered with the attention, but that she quashed anything beyond whatever flirting by text or at work. It floored me that I did not connect that before.Yes my radar went up and maybe that was enough to stop things, but to actually see that as an EA took time. So I know that her EA had nothing to do with my PA. It just really hit home how vulnerable both my wife and I were because of how badly we were dealing with out marriage.

In some ways my A was the catalyst to get my wife and I to deal with stuff.

JBWD posted 11/22/2019 12:21 PM

I did this exact routine at stressful periods of my post-A life.

BSR, Iím discovering the same. Iím finding these peaks and troughs of desperation where I start to project- What being ďaloneĒ looks like 5 years from now. Ugh.
The GOOD news is Iím recognizing whatís driving that and understanding that itís (perhaps good perhaps bad) NOT about any one person, but rather about my perceived need to couple. To define myself as a desirable partner.
Glad I can catch it, looking forward to it dwindling.
Glad MCS is starting to see it as well.

Pages: 1 · 2

Return to Forum List

Return to Wayward Side

© 2002-2021 SurvivingInfidelity.com ®. All Rights Reserved.     Privacy Policy